SHANGHAI, China, May 22, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- 21Vianet Group, Inc. (Nasdaq:VNET) ("21Vianet"), the largest carrier-neutral Internet data center services provider in China, announced today the official public preview of Microsoft Corporation's (Nasdaq:MSFT) ("Microsoft"), Windows Azure, in China. At a ceremony held today at the China Pavilion located at the World Expo site in Shanghai, 21Vianet, in partnership with Microsoft, announced the public preview of Windows Azure service in China, will be available on June 6, 2013. The event was attended by many respected technology executives and government officials including: US Ambassador to China, Gary Locke; Shanghai Pudong New Area District Mayor, Jiang Liang; Microsoft CEO, Steve Ballmer; 21Vianet CEO, Josh Chen. In addition, early adopters, who are working closely with 21Vianet and Microsoft to develop applications on the platform, such as Kingdee, Qoros, RenRen, and PPTV, are already preparing to take advantage of the benefits of reliability, flexibility and value available through Windows Azure. Mr. Josh Chen, Chairman and CEO of 21Vianet stated: "We are extremely excited to officially launch Microsoft Windows Azure services in China and believe 21Vianet will provide great contributions to the growth of cloud infrastructure and services throughout China. Our cooperation further enhances 21Vianet's capabilities in helping to develop China's cloud infrastructure services and strengthening our core competency for customers, ensuring seamless integration of public cloud software development, datacenter and network operation, maintenance, customer support and service delivery quality. As a cloud enabler, 21Vianet is pleased to offer Microsoft's world-class cloud services for the first time to businesses in China. By providing carrier-level services for better public cloud operations, including security and compliance, datacenter and network operations, maintenance and customer services related to cloud operations, 21Vianet and Microsoft are committed to offering the best cloud services available throughout China." Ralph Haupter, corporate vice president and CEO for Microsoft Greater China, said: "In China, we are committed as a company to partnering to drive innovation, competitiveness and opportunity, and I believe this collaborative approach is why we are the first multinational in the world to bring public cloud services to China. With Microsoft's experience running more than 200 cloud services for more than a billion customers worldwide, we expect it to be the best in China as well, and we are really excited to unleash the power of Windows Azure in this market."